Monday, July 22, 2013

Meatless Monday: Superpowered Jam

After taking a vacation from unnecessary cooking during our heatwave, I have resumed my experiments with chia — determined to find some tasty ways to incorporate this amazing food into my [our] diet.

Since fresh blueberries are in season, I decided to try a recipe printed on the back of my bag of Bob’s Red Mill Grains-of-Discovery Whole Seed Chia. Bob’s recipe for Blueberry Chia Jam utilizes chia’s gelling properties as a “nutrient-rich substitute for pectin.”

For once I decided to follow the instructions to the letter. Here you go:

Blueberry Chia Jam 
Yield Ten Servings

3 cups fresh blueberries
1/4 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup chia seeds
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Combine berries and agave nectar in a small saucepan.
Cook over medium heat until berries begin to burst — about 5 minutes.
Add chia seed and cook, stirring often, 
until very thick — about 15 minutes.
Remove from heat and let cool.
Add vanilla extract.
Store in refrigerator up to 7 days.

The result? It looks like jam and tastes like jam. The only thing you have to wrap your head around is that your usual blueberry jam does not have seeds, and this jam is chock full of them. The taste is blueberry, but the texture is blackberry.

It makes a delicious Greek yogurt parfait and a mean jam sandwich.

Greek yogurt, chia jam, Greek yogurt, chia jam
This recipe is meant to yield 10 servings. By my calculations [using Bob’s nutrition info], the chia in each serving will yield 8% of your daily dietary fiber and nearly 2.5% of your calcium. 

Blueberries are a super food in their own right. 

Chia + blueberries + no high fructose corn syrup = one very healthy treat!

Who knew jam could be so easy and a superfood, too?

Don’t be surprised if your recipe yields less than 10 servings. I don’t think you will find it a problem to eat all your jam in a week. My guess is that it will freeze well in a ziplock bag. I was going to try this, but, well…maybe next time.

Have a great week. Happy eating.

I often blog on food or food issues on Monday in support of Meatless Monday, one of several programs developed in the Healthy Monday project, founded in 2003 in association with Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Communications. Meatless Monday’s goal is “to help reduce meat consumption 15% in order to improve personal health and the health of our planet.”

1 comment:

  1. Sorry for the earlier typo in the recipe. It has been corrected.